…this is the third in atrilogy which aims to contribute to local and national conversations on climate solutions and policy choices….our first report, The Climate Gap: Inequalities in How Climate Change Hurts Americans & How to Close the Gap (2009), synthesized available data on the disproportionate and unequal health and economic consequences of climate change on people of color and the poor – as well as offering recommendations on closing that gap. Our second report, Minding the Climate Gap: What’s at Stake if California’s Climate Law isn’t Done Right and Right Away (2010) went deeper, performing an analysis that suggested that the mechanisms we choose to reduce greenhouse gases can have important and differential health consequences for people of color and poor communities and the pattern of environmental injustice in the state.
This report chronicles what’s being done by those who are actually “facing the climate gap.” This is a qualitative companion to the previous more quantitative reports on disproportionate impact. Here, we show how those affected communities are implementing creative responses in terms of adaptation and policy innovation to the direct, indirect, and unjust effects of climate change. To be clear, there are many more aspects of community response to climate issues – we were particularly interested here in which groups are doing this in relation to the rubric of “climate justice” and are thus mobilizing new constituencies to the climate change debate.